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Google Says Fluff Content Makes It Hard For Search Engines To Understand

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Google Says Fluff Content Makes It Hard For Search Engines To Understand


Google’s John Mueller the other day said on Twitter the example given to him was “less about duplicate content, and more about fluff.” He said when it comes to fluff content, it makes “it hard for search engines to figure out what you’re trying to say.”

The truth is, it seems like not only does Google crawl and index content fluff, but the search engine seems to prefer to rank content with a lot of fluff.

As you can imagine, that got some funny responses – because you and I know, Google prefers to rank content that is fluffier, even though its featured snippets just get to the point.

Let me share the context:

Here is John’s statement on fluff content to the last post Alan made:

Now, I love Ryan’s response:

It is pretty true, not just with recipe content – although, it is the most obvious with recipe content that Google ranks in search.

It is a topic I covered before around word count and quality where I said I hate it “when someone adds a huge amount of fluff to their content – be it written or spoken – in order to fill space. Say what you need to say and get on with it. People have limited time on this planet, one thing we cannot do it give back time lost. So keep things short, to the point.”

There should be something about getting to your point, in your content, in the least amount of words, so that your users can convert faster or get what they need in a more efficient manner.

But until Google stops rewarding fluff – we will continue to produce fluff.

Forum discussion at Twitter.





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Google Layoffs, DOJ Sues Google, Search Console Content Ideas & Google Optimize Going Away, Yahoo Search Comeback

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Google Layoffs, DOJ Sues Google, Search Console Content Ideas & Google Optimize Going Away, Yahoo Search Comeback

As I mentioned briefly last week, Google announced mass layoffs last week, and I discuss what I know so far about it. There are also reports that Google is pushing advertisers to use third-party resellers and not their internal staff. The DOJ sued Google again to break up its ad business. Microsoft announced its earnings, showing how Bing’s search ad growth continues to slow. Bing also may have had a search ranking algorithm update. Google Search Console content ideas beta feature may go away in March. Google Search Console Insights has an achievements section. Google confirmed a bug with some preferred languages in Google Search, and they blame mobile-first indexing. Google Ads had an outage on Monday morning that caused huge headaches. Google has no preferences between connected structured data and not connected structured data. Google will parse the image elements even when those elements are enclosed within other elements. Google published a new case study after 18 months, this one from Vimeo on video SEO. Google said generating tons of fake URLs on a site won’t cause SEO issues. Google Business Profiles now supports cars for sale inventory for US dealerships. Bing is testing infinite scroll. Google is testing two justifications in the local results. Google is also testing a new trusted store badge. Bing has a new menu for image search that uses a drop-down and adds explore and collect. Account-level negative keywords are now available on Google Ads. Google will sunset Google Optimize on September 30th. And it seems like Yahoo Search may be making a comeback to Search – that would be exciting. And if you want to help sponsor those vlogs, go to patreon.com/barryschwartz. That was the search news this week at the Search Engine Roundtable.

SPONSOR: This week’s video recap is sponsored by Duda, the Professional Website Builder You Can Call Your Own.

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New Google Trusted Store Badge Test

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Google Store Smile

Google is testing a new design for the trusted store badge in the paid shopping results. The Google Trusted Stores program to all U.S. merchants back in 2012, along with that came a badge in the search results to make those listings stand out.

FYI – here is how to qualify for this trusted store badge.

Brian Freiesleben spotted this new badge the other day and posted a screenshot on Twitter – here is that screenshot:

Google Trusted Store Badge New

Curently, the badge looks more like this version from last year:

click for full size

And the original one looked like this:

Google Trusted Stores AdWords Badge

Brian said on Twitter, “Would love to see Google add this to organic products from trusted merchants as well, but not sure if that’s likely.”

Forum discussion at Twitter.



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Google Search Console Content Ideas Going Away March 28th

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Google Ideas Light

Last December, we caught Google testing an experimental feature named content ideas in Google Search Console. Well, yesterday, Google sent more invites to this feature but noted the feature is only available until March 28, 2023 and then it goes away.

Both Robin Dirksen on Twitter and Deepak Ness on Twitter shared screenshots of this feature but the new part is the March 28th date.

The email they received about this feature reads, “Note: This feature be available only until March 28, 2023, and only to select properties.” Then when you access the feature, there is a notice in the interface that says, “New! Get inspiration for new content (available until March 28).”

Here are those screenshots (click to enlarge):

click for full size

click for full size

We know this seems like the Question Hub feature and that Google Question Hub shut down this month. So maybe this content ideas feature is also shutting down but not until the end of March?

Here are more tweets with this:

I do wonder if Google is only testing it until then and maybe will bring it to more users later or if Google is completely killing it off on March 28th?

Forum discussion at Twitter.



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